Smoke gets even more tech investment – this time, from the government

London is one of the world’s most important tech sectors, with a new tech firm formed every hour in the capital, claims DCMS

Posted 25 July 2017 at 9:44am by

London could “cement its place as a world-leader in the fight against cyber attacks” with the planned opening of a new government-backed, £14.5m cyber security innovation centre.

DCMS (the Department of Digital, Culture, Media & Support) says the site is all about developing the next of generation of cyber security technology to help keep the nation safe.

The facility is expected to open in early 2018, with the announcement being framed as another element in the government’s on-going £1.9bn commitment to significantly transform the UK’s cyber security as part of the 2016-2021 National Cyber Security Strategy. (The National Cyber Security Programme, managed by the Cabinet Office, co-ordinates the work undertaken to implement the UK’s National Cyber Security Strategy.)

A competition to develop and design the new centre was launched yesterday, with the money allotted for a three year period.

The idea is to also make the UK the best place to “start and grow a digital business”, as well as be “the safest place to be online”, adds DCMS.

That’s because the planned centre will see government bringing together large firms to work hand in hand with innovative startups and industry experts to develop the new technologies businesses will need to protect themselves.

It will also give startups access to expert technical mentoring, business support and advice to help them to grow in their early stages and contribute to the UK’s “thriving £22bn cyber security sector”.

Minister for Digital Matt Hancock claimed that, “London is one of the world’s most important tech sectors, with a record £5.6bn investment in the industry in the past six months, and a new tech firm formed every hour in the capital.

“Our investment in a new cyber innovation centre will not only cement the city’s position as a world leader, but also boost the whole country by giving UK firms access to the latest cyber technology and allowing start-ups to get the support they need to develop.”

The capital is also home to the headquarters of the newly created National Cyber Security Centre, which opened earlier this year and is one of two new centres being developed to help make sure UK firms have access to the latest cyber technology to secure their businesses.

London has also been confirmed as the hub for a slew of £25m worth of new projects to exploring how society can benefit from the power of interconnected devices while remaining safe, secure and resilient, says DCMS.

The projects are funded by the PETRAS Research Hub (led by UCL) as part of the Government-funded IoT UK research and innovation programme, with participation confirmed by Lloyds Register Foundation, industry and public sector organisations.